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Brueggen, Dutch musical maestro, dies at age of 79

THE HAGUE, The Netherlands -- Dutch conductor Frans Brueggen, a musician once recognized as one of the world's finest recorder players, has died at his Amsterdam home, his orchestra announced on Wednesday. He was 79.

The Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century did not release a statement, but posted a black-and-white photograph of their founding conductor hunched over sheet music, simply stating: Frans Brueggen, Oct. 30, 1934 - Aug. 13, 2014.

Dutch media said the famous conductor had been battling an unknown illness “for some time.”

Brueggen was best known for forming the orchestra in 1981, which specializes in playing 18th and early 19th-century classical music on instruments from the time or replicas.

Brueggen was also “once regarded as one of the world's finest recorder players,” according to the Bach Cantatas website and has worked his whole life to shed its image as being a child's instrument.

He and his orchestra performed Beethoven's complete symphonies, but also works by Bach, Purcell, Mozart, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Haydn and Rameau.

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